“Jameel Yaqub” posted the following insightful comment in response to my blog about Iranian Christians facing persecution and possible execution.

What do we pray? For in death they
have life. So we do we pray that they will not be put to death? Or do
we pray that they will have courage and peace as they face death? Do we
pray that they might not recant their confession of faith? Or do we
commit their souls to the Lord? Is it really life and death? Or is it
life and life? So many questions…

Here’s my response to Jameel’s comment: 

JY – good point. i have wrestled with whether i should pray for long life & deliverance vs praying for strength to endure whatever might happen. i end up praying for both, hoping that God will extend his life and ministry. hard not to pray for deliverance when the guy has a wife & kids… maybe i should blog about your comment.

What do you think – should we pray for deliverance or for strength to face death? This is not a topic the church in the West is comfortable thinking and talking about. But the early church constantly faced the possibility of torture and death for their faith.

What a culture is willing to fight and die for says a lot about what they value. Cultures adn nations used to fight and die for their religious beliefs. That is no longer the case in most of the western world. Religion has become optional and decorative – not something worth fighting or dying for.

Today we still fight for and die for what we really believe in and value – democracy, capitalism, affordable oil.

I am not suggesting that the Church in the West should engage in holy wars, but we sure need to be willing to live and die for what we believe in, like the original disciples adn the early church fathers.